Surely you Joust


J.D Loftin, Staff Writer

During the Renaissance Festival, the times of the past come to visit us. From the Renaissance era, which rose as early as the 14th Century and ended in the 17th Century, surfaced art, religion and the rise of intelligence.

The Renaissance was considered the bridge connecting the middle ages and modern history. It started as a cultural campaign in Italy and in the late medieval period — furthermore, later spread to the remainder of Europe.

Sophomore James Rosenzweig has attended the Renaissance Festival in Kansas City for the past five years.

“[The festival is] about the best part of the Renaissance, like how society was changing and how people were going down different paths of thought and becoming more independent in their religion,” Rosenzweig said.

The Renaissance Festival offers shopping as a large part of its festivities. The festival offers a lot of clothing, jewelry, glass, and many more souvenirs. There is a vast choice in food selection at the festival, and a well-known menu item is the giant turkey leg.

“It can get expensive if you eat a lot,” teacher Jim Laughlin said.

At the festival, there are large events that go on throughout the day. Grand March parades are hosted daily, and there are also stage and street acts, as well as musical groups that perform. The Renaissance Festival is located in Bonner Springs, Kansas, an off-road area that doesn’t have concrete sidewalks, making it harder for handicapped people to maneuver the terrain; however, people are able to rent a motorized scooter for the day to get around.

There is also an abundance of mini-games and rides at the Festival, such as ax throwing, royale darts, and camel rides. Every day there is a special event called jousting, where two knights ride on horseback toward each other with lances in their hands, which are large wooden poles carved to a point, trying to knock each other off the other horse.

“I remember one specific time where I had a duel with a knight with wooden swords — we ended in a draw where I stuck the knight on the side of his chest, however, he struck me back on my left shoulder,” Rosenzweig said.

Furthermore, patrons wander around the festival looking for new things to do and try out. “I watch shows, eat turkey legs and explore,” Laughlin said. In addition, the atmosphere is filled with staff members in costumes and a large dirt path leading all around the park. “There isn’t an overwhelming amount of Renaissance art at the festival, but there is a lot of art inside of the buildings,” said Rosenzweig.

However, the once a year festival is not for everyone. There are performers who walk on the path and will try to include you in their act, so Laughlin said people who are introverts or don’t want to stand out in the crowd, be wary of this.

“I went to the Renaissance Festival one year and was relentlessly followed by a pregnant wench who was tipped off by my brother to follow me around the park for a while saying how this man impregnated me,” Laughlin said.

On the other hand, when there is a downside, Rosenzweig said there is almost always a positive side. This festival is fun for big go-getters who would love to interact with the staff.

“[It has a] festive atmosphere with lots of energy,” Laughlin said.